239 Huntington Avenue,
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Firms: Peabody & Stearns
Previous Names: Chickering Hall, St. James Theatre
This theatre was in Back Bay, located near Symphony Hall, Northeastern University and the New England Conservatory of Music on Huntington Avenue. Its story began in 1901 when the famous piano makers opened the 800-seat Chickering Hall,designed by the architectural firm Peabody & Stearns.
In 1912, the same architectural firm were used to expand the building into the 1,600-seat, St. James Theatre, which presented vaudeville and film, operated by Marcus Loew. In the 1920’s, the theatre metamorphosed into one of Boston’s then popular stock company stages. It resumed as a movie theatre in the 1930’s.
By the 1940’s it had been renamed Uptown Theatre and was operated by the George A. Giles Co. This second run house catered to college students. Its vaudeville days was still in evidence as it had a full stage.
The building was demolished in 1968. The site is now occupied by part of the Christian Science complex.
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